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Lights out for sea turtles

A Kemp’s ridley hatchling makes its way to the shoreline of one of the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s beaches, July 11, 2015. The Kemp’s ridley is the rarest and most endangered sea turtle in the world. It was discovered nesting on the beaches of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., for the first time, recorded May 14, 2015, and then again May 28, 2015. (Courtesy photo/Released)

Sea turtle nesting season is May 1 to Oct. 31, and the 45th Space Wing, mission partners, residents and visitors, are reminded to observe and help protect wildlife by extinguishing all nonessential light between 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. during nesting season. This helps minimize injury or death to sea turtles protected by the Endangered Species Act. (Courtesy photo/Angy Chambers)

Kemp’s ridley hatchlings make their way to the Atlantic Ocean off of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., July 11, 2015. The Kemp’s ridley is the rarest and most endangered sea turtle in the world. It was discovered nesting on the beaches of the Cape for the first time recorded May 14, 2015, and then again May 28, 2015. (Courtesy photo/Released)

Sea turtle nesting season is May 1 to Oct. 31, and the 45th Space Wing, mission partners, residents and visitors, are reminded to observe and help protect wildlife by extinguishing all nonessential light between 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. during nesting season. This helps minimize injury or death to sea turtles protected by the Endangered Species Act. (Courtesy photo/Angy Chambers)

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Sea turtle nesting season is May 1 to Oct. 31, and the 45th Space Wing, mission partners, residents and visitors, are reminded to observe and help protect wildlife by extinguishing all nonessential light between 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. during nesting season. This helps minimize injury or death to sea turtles protected by the Endangered Species Act.

The beaches at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, are prime nesting habitat for loggerhead, green and leatherback sea turtles.  Artificial lighting negatively affects nocturnal sea turtle behavior of both adults and hatchlings.

Disorientation occurs when sea turtles crawl toward inland light sources rather than the ocean.  Exterior lighting that is not mission-, safety-, or security-essential will be extinguished during this time frame.

For further information regarding exterior lighting at 45 SW installations, refer to Space Wing Instruction (SWI) 45 SWI 32-7001, Exterior Lighting Management.

Questions regarding the requirements of the SWI or concerns relating to sea turtles and lighting should be directed to 45th Space Wing Civil Engineer Installation Management Flight at (321) 853-6822/6858.

(Submission is an annual notice)